The Boston Athletic Association announced Thursday that the field size for the 2014 Boston Marathon will increase to 36,000 runners and registration for the race will open on Monday, Sept. 9 at 10 a.m. The new field size marks an increase of 9,000 runners from 2013, but it will not surpass the record of 38,708 entrants set at the 100th Boston Marathon in 1996.
The additional spots will give qualifiers slightly more opportunity to secure a coveted 2014 race number and will present logistical challenges for race organizers amid dramatically increased security measures in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings.
“Interested runners have been remarkably respectful and cooperative as we worked towards what will be an important day in the history of the race, the sport and the City of Boston,” said BAA executive director Tom Grilk. “The BAA offers special thanks and gratitude to the town, city and state officials for the cooperation and allowances needed to conduct a special race of this size and scope.”
Around the world, the distance running community has anxiously awaited information about next year’s event, which is scheduled for April 21. Following the bombings on Boylston Street this past April, many avid marathoners expressed a desire to enter the 2014 race as a show of solidarity and resiliency. And many scrambled to achieve qualifying times in late spring and summer marathons.
The BAA announcement comes after Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis told NECN on Aug. 2 that “we have 9,000 more runners that are going to be in the field” next year. At the time, the BAA said it was still working with “each of the eight cities and towns along the route” to determine field size. All of the municipalities from Hopkinton to Boston needed to approve the increase.
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